Blog topic: Music

Playasax and rolls

Playasax acquired by the ARS

In November 2014, I posted a blog detailing a very small roll (4.5" wide) that staff at the Archive of Recorded Sound had uncovered among the reproducing piano rolls in the Denis Condon Collection of Reproducing Pianos and Rolls. It was discovered that the roll was designed to be used with a toy, a type of player saxophone called the Playasax, produced by Q.R.S. I am very pleased to announce that the Archive, just yesterday, acquired an actual Playasax along with four additional rolls, thanks to a generous donation by Kristine Sturgill. This donation will make up the Otto M. Slater Playasax Collection, named in honor of Mrs Sturgill's father, who passed away earlier this year. 

Jubilee Hall, Fisk University

Piston's Salute, Fisk, and Stanford

June 18, 2015
by Ray Heigemeir

A recent score arrival highlights an interesting musical connection between Stanford and Fisk Universities. Salute, a fanfare for four b-flat trumpets and optional percussion by the American composer Walter Piston (1894-1976), was written for the Thirteenth Festival of Music and Fine Art at Fisk University in Nashville, held in 1942. The piece was commissioned by Harold C. Schmidt, Director of Choirs and Chair of the Music Department.

Ravel's Bolero (detail)

Songs of survival: vocal music by women POWs

May 20, 2015
by Ray Heigemeir

Helen Colijn (1920-2006) was held captive in a series of Japanese prison camps on the island of Sumatra for three and one half years during World War II.  One remarkable survival mechanism for some of the prisoners at the Women’s Barracks Camp in Palembang was making music, and a series of concerts was prepared and given in which the women sang a cappella arrangements of great works of Western Art music.  The music was arranged by Margaret Dryburgh and Norah Chambers. Programs included Dvorak’s Largo from the New World Symphony, the Pastoral from Handel’s Messiah, Chopin’s ‘Raindrop’ Prelude, and Tchaikovsky’s Andante Cantabile, among many other works. 

Brahms-Handel Variations, detail

New music scores and facsimiles, April 2015

April 9, 2015
by Ray Heigemeir

For your browsing pleasure, we present the following list of new scores added to composer complete editions, historical sets, and facsimiles:

 

Modern editions: 

 

Bach, CPE. Keyboard concertos from manuscript sources.  III / Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach ; edited by Barbara Wiermann.

Beethoven. Festspiele von 1812 und 1822.  Werke / Beethoven ; herausgegeben von Beethoven-Archiv, Bonn, unter Leitung von Joseph Schmidt-Görg.

Elgar. The concertos (second edition) Elgar complete edition. Borough Green, Kent : Novello, c1981-<c2014 >

English keyboard music c.1600-1625 / edited by Alan Brown.

Art of Jazz

The Archive of Recorded Sound is pleased to announce the acquisition and recently completed processing of the Art Vincent Jazz Collection. The collection features over 800 hours of interviews, broadcasts, and call-in segments primarily created for the radio program Art of Jazz, produced and presented by Art Vincent (1926-1993), Jazz DJ and concert producer. The show aired on radio stations in the New York Metropolitan area between 1961 and the mid 1980s, including WFHA, WJLK, WRLB, and WGBO. In addition to some live concert recordings, the show notably featured interviews with major figures in the jazz world, such as Stan Kenton, Count Basie, Buddy DeFranco, Woody Herman, Ray Charles, Frank Sinatra, Lou Rawls, Roy Eldridge, Skitch Henderson, Art Farmer, Duke Ellington, Teddy Wilson, Stan Getz, Louis Armstrong, Gerry Mulligan, Dave Brubeck, Benny Goodman, Stephane Grappelli, Dizzy Gillespie, Toshiko Akiyoshi, Vera Auer, Ruth Brown, Betty Carter, Etta Jones, Sheila Jordan, Nellie Lutcher, Anita O'Day, Shirley Scott, Maxine Sullivan, Nancy Wilson, and many others. 

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